A disappointingly cool and meagre vintage
A disappointing thin and cool vintage for most Australian red wine makers, except those in the New South Wales regions of the Hunter Valley and Mudgee. Although February was largely hot and dry throughout most major regions, January was cool and March was wet, thoroughly dampening expectations.
Some Barossa reds whose richness and flavour approached usual levels were made from early-harvested vineyards, while it was one of the better seasons for Hunter Valley Shiraz in a largely disappointing decade. Some fine Margaret River Cabernets were made from a significantly cooler season than usual.
Yalumba’s Signature Series Cabernet Shiraz shines out amid some poor pickings from the warmer South Australian regions, while the Wolf Blass Black Label blend, itself largely sourced from Langhorne Creek, remains a fine red sporting characteristic Blass oak treatment. Huntington Estate (Mudgee) produced a firm, if leaner Cabernet Sauvignon than normal while in Margaret River, Moss Wood and Vasse Felix made elegant, fine-grained cabernets. Right from left field, 1975 also produced a very firm, if distinctively minty cabernet blend from the cool-climate Virgin Hills vineyard near Kyneton in Victoria.